Victims of photo leaks may sue search engine for $100m.
Lawyers of celebrities affected in the naked photo leaks are threatening to sue Google for not removing the pictures from its services, according a letter seen by the New York Post.
Unnamed victims of the leaks are rumoured to be seeking $100m from the search engine and its subsidiaries for exploiting interest in the images, with those affected including the actresses Jennifer Lawrence and Kirsten Dunst.
In the letter lawyer Martin Singer claimed Google had failed "to act expeditiously, and responsibly to remove the images", adding that "in knowingly accommodating, facilitating, and perpetuating the unlawful conduct" it was "making millions and profiting from the victimisation of women".
Singer claimed to have sent multiple removal notices to Google within the last four weeks, but many of the images could still be seen through its video host YouTube and blogging platform BlogSpot.
"Google knows the images are hacked stolen property, private and confidential photos and videos unlawfully obtained and posted by pervert predators who are violating the victims’ privacy rights," the letter continues.
"Like the NFL, which turned a blind eye while its players assaulted and victimised women and children, Google has turned a blind eye while its sites repeatedly exploit and victimize these women."
His comments follow remarks by New York Post’s owner News Corp, whose chief executive Robert Thomson called Google "a platform for piracy" in a letter to the European Commission.
At time of writing Google had yet to issue any comment.